We support Liverpool
Sir Alex Ferguson insists Manchester United will support Liverpool Football Club “in every way we can” in the aftermath of last week’s findings by the Hillsborough Independent Panel, amid fears Sunday’s Barclays Premier League clash at Anfield could be marred by crowd trouble.
The Reds will travel to Merseyside just 11 days after the Hillsborough Independent Panel cleared Liverpool fans of any wrongdoing in the disaster, which claimed 96 lives at the 1989 FA Cup semi-final in Sheffield.
The Panel also exposed a long list of negligent actions and cover-ups that either contributed to the deaths or attempted to hide the truth of what happened on the day.
Previous fixtures between United and Liverpool have, on occasion, been tainted by supporters’ bad behaviour, with minorities on both sides known to have sung distasteful songs that mock the rival club’s tragedies.
Last week, Sir Alex pleaded with United and Liverpool supporters to try and “understand each other’s problems” and reminded them that “both clubs had suffered fatalities through football”.
And following a minority of fans’ chants (“Always the victim, it’s never your fault”) at Old Trafford during Wigan’s visit last Saturday, Sir Alex has reiterated his desire for Sunday’s game at Anfield to pass off peacefully.
“I didn’t hear it [the chants at the Wigan game], but everyone else seemed to hear it. David Gill heard it in the director’s box and was disappointed,” the United manager told reporters at a press conference before United’s Champions League Group H tie against Galatasaray on Wednesday night.
“The chant is a new chant. It only started after the Suarez situation [the Liverpool forward was found guilty of racially abusing Patrice Evra last season].
“But in the current climate and having spoken on Friday, asking our supporters to adhere to the policy that we want to adopt – that we’re completely in support of Liverpool Football Club at this moment in time and we understand what those families must have felt during the week when they got that report – it was disappointing to hear that.
“It’s a minority, though, and in society there’s a minority who want to be heard. That’s the difficulty you’ve got nowadays.
“As a club we’re totally in support of Liverpool and the situation they’re in. It’s going to be a very emotional day on Sunday and we’ll support them in every way we can.”